At last, an indie band has got it right. Considering all the monotonous droning one must sift through in the current indie scene (which has degenerated into banality), it’s good to know that there’s a group capable of capturing real emotions within a characteristically indie sound. With their third studio album, A Different Kind of Fix, Bombay Bicycle Club have proven once more that it’s possible to be indie without being boring.
Beautifully layered, the record is like a many-tiered cake, with each level as scrumptious as the one supporting it. Effervescent guitar tones trickle in and out of entrancing vocals and prowling bass lines, producing an effect reminiscent of The Smiths. The album overflows with strange yet infectious rhythms that transport the listener across fields of nostalgia and into the valley of the wistful in a pleasant and spellbinding manner. Carefully thought-out yet remarkably fresh, each song is a soft, inviting piece of magic.
In the first track, “How Can You Swallow So Much Sleep,” the first guitar note alone is enough to induce a blissful trance. A solitary reverberating guitar takes on a hypnotic riff, complete with an echoing quality that plunges the listener into an inescapably dreamy tune. The lead single “Shuffle” is another standout, a bouncy, spirited track for which the word “shuffle” describes the only appropriate bodily response. Elsewhere, “What You Want” is a stunning tempest of stormy vocals and guitars.
But despite its many merits, A Different Kind of Fix is disappointingly safe. The record is not in the least bit daring but serves only to solidify the band’s already established sound. In fact, Bombay Bicycle Club have found a comfortable niche from which they refuse to stray. Still, this album reaffirms their potential to become a top act.